U.S. nonprofit solar installer GRID Alternatives has announced an expansion of its multifamily solar program to include free technical assistance nationally for affordable housing owners, developers and operators. The program also offers turnkey solar PV design/installation for multifamily affordable housing in several states.
The technical assistance service is funded by a grant from The JPB Foundation and is intended to reduce barriers to entry and help affordable housing providers install solar power on their multifamily dwellings. With more than 6 million American families living in affordable housing units nationwide, the opportunities are huge, according to GRID Alternatives.
“For housing owners and developers, putting solar on multifamily housing portfolios can have great benefits, but it can also be very complex,” says Tim Sears, chief operating officer and co-founder of GRID Alternatives. “This service helps navigate complicated funding and regulatory issues to stabilize utility bills, save money, retain tenant services and avoid raising rent. It’s a win for everyone involved.”
GRID Alternatives says the free technical assistance includes complete portfolio assessments for multifamily housing owners; identification of funding options for existing, new construction or building rehabilitation; owner representation, bid analysis, and other services to support solar implementation; evaluation of energy efficiency and battery storage options; and resident connections to workforce development and energy efficiency education opportunities.
The nonprofit adds that the new offering is particularly timely in California, which offers significant incentives to support multifamily solar adoption. In addition the Multifamily Affordable Solar Housing program, which provides rebates for multifamily solar installations, California passed A.B.693 in 2015 to allocate up to $100 million annually from the state’s cap-and-trade proceeds to fund solar installations on multifamily housing in disadvantaged communities, starting in 2017.
More information on GRID Alternatives’ multifamily solar program is available here.